Growing your brand’s online presence with social media campaigns can be tricky when most brands are all using the same tactics. It’s important to have a sense of direction for how you want your brand to be perceived by others and what you want to accomplish through your campaigns. Here are some creative social media growth hacks for Instagram you need to know.
1. Utilize Instagram Stories
Instagram stories give your brand the opportunity to promote posts your followers might have missed due to Instagram’s algorithm. Since posts don’t appear in users’ feeds in chronological order, your followers might not see your posts until hours, even days later. With Instagram stories you can let your followers know when you’ve uploaded a new photo and use it to promote any sales, promo codes and product launches you want to tell them about. Be sure to add links in your stories to drive people to your website (right now links are only available for users with a high number of followers, but hopefully instagram will roll it out to everyone soon)! If you are having trouble with coming up with content in general, be sure to check out our post on creative instagram photo ideas for some tips!
Engage with current customers and potential customers weekly (if not daily) on instagram. Respond to everyone who comments on your photos-- even if it doesn’t necessarily need a response. This will keep you brand top of mind because you will pop up in their notifications. Follow individuals in your target audience on instagram and comment on their photos. I’m not talking about generic comments like “awesome photo.” Come up with thoughtful responses that are clearly not canned. Even though you won’t be able to message as many people, the authenticity of your comments will resonate much more and you might even be able to start a meaningful conversation. This is one of the best ways to authentically and organically grow your follower count.
3. Use Hashtags
Using hashtags is a big way to get immediate growth on your social media campaign. Believe it or not, hashtags are still an effective way to reach people. Instagram allows you to use up to 30 hashtags (if you put more instagram will not put your photo in the results for those hashtags). When picking hashtags don’t choose generic hashtags like #beauty or #food. You should target longer, more targeted hashtags like #veganbeauty or #recipesforkids. Since there is less competition for those hashtags, your photo will stay toward the top of the feed longer, giving you more exposure.
It is also a good idea to create a unique hashtag for your campaign. This will help people find all of your campaign images and videos and allow them to join the conversation by also using the hashtag in their posts. Also, Instagram just rolled out the option that allows people to “follow” a hashtag, which could be a game-changer for user-generated content campaigns. If you’re worried about it not looking clean on your account, try including them all in a comment on your photo instead of at the end of your caption, but make sure to post the comment immediately after posting (hashtags show up in order of when the photo was posted, not when the hashtag was added). Check out our post on how to pick the right hashtags for more info.
4. Tag Locations
Tagging locations on Instagram posts and stories is a detail that is highly effective, yet often overlooked by brands. When you supplement hashtags with tagging a location, you’re essentially doubling your reach. Now your post will appear on the pages of each of the hashtags you used as well as the location page. Plus, posts with a tagged location get 79% more engagement than posts without it, which definitely proves making that extra step is worth it.
5. Host a Contest
Let’s face it: people love free stuff. Contests are easy to incorporate to your campaign to increase engagement and get major growth for your social media accounts with only a small cost to you. Just make sure that you are giving away something that your target audience wants. If you give out an ipad, you will get a bunch of people who want an ipad, if you give away your product, you will get a bunch of people that want your product.
So, let’s say you having a contest and the winner gets your product for free. To enter the contest, make sure you have a great call to action that is encouraging and makes the contest appealing. It can be asking people to comment and tag two friends, comment and follow your account, or some combination of those options. By doing this, you increase your audience exposure from tags based of the contest entries and potentially gain new followers from that same group of people.
6. Use Micro-Influencers
Micro-influencers are a great way to get the word out about your product or service. We like to call these micro-influencers, the “power-middle” because they have such powerful influence with their followers. To get started check out our post on how to start influencer marketing, or you can contact us to handle the whole process!
Those are six easy social media campaign growth hacks on Instagram, but there are plenty more out there. You should constantly try new social media tactics to keep up your growth. If you’re ready to jumpstart an influencer marketing campaign for your brand, click here to learn more about how Statusphere can help!